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AJR Am J Roentgenol. 1984 Feb;142(2):299-304.

Small bowel double-contrast enema in stage III ovarian cancer.


The efficiency of small bowel double-contrast enema in the detection and localization of tumor- or therapy-induced lesions of the intestine was studied retrospectively in 43 patients with stage III ovarian carcinoma. The radiographic findings in 62 examinations were verified by operative and autopsy findings and by the clinical course. Postoperative changes in the small bowel were noted in 69% of the patients (63% moderate, 6% severe). Signs of acute radiation enteritis were found in 36% (all moderate). Signs of chronic radiation enteropathy were detected in 71% (53% moderate, 18% severe). Small bowel obstruction due to recurrent tumor was correctly identified in 9%. Nonobstructing peritoneal implants were detected in 27% of the patients. The small bowel double-contrast enema is accurate in localizing lesions resulting from adhesions, acute and chronic radiation enteritis, or obstructing tumor; it is less efficient in detecting nonobstructive peritoneal metastases. The major clinical value of this examination is its ability to differentiate "dysfunctional intestine," which is managed conservatively, from focal obstruction requiring surgery. The radiographic features of chronic radiation enteritis on double-contrast enema examination are discussed in detail.

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